Archive for January, 2009

Classic Dave’s Water Heater

Wednesday, January 21st, 2009

A few weeks ago, I finally got around to replace my water heater.

Was it broke? No,

Was it old? Yes.  Over 12yrs old. and I don’t trust any water heater over 10yrs. So yea I’m two years over due in my head. So before it sprang a leak or the heating elements left me with a cold shower I decided it’s time to change it out. Actually it was my neighbor that asked if I could help him do his  and with that I said you know now I have to do mine. Isn’t it great how neighbors sometimes get you going too, or your wife saying hey when are you going to do ours?! So the 40 gallon Hot water tank is in and working well. Today I thought I start an energy audit on my home starting with this brand new 49 gal water heater from Lowes.

This water heater is rated at 4500 watts but me being a tradesmen, data plates are nice but my meter rules.  I need to know what it cost me at my house not at a perfect lab room.

So applying a little ohms law Volts 246.6 x amps 18.44 gives me 4547.3 watts or 4.55kw JEA Jacksonville’s electric company charges .13cts a kilowatt(includes tax) so my water heater cost me 59cts/hr.

Right next to the water heater is my washer! hmm lets turn that on and wash some whites in hot water. And lets see how long my water heater stays on.  Well its 32F outside so the entering cold water may be a little colder than on a hot summer day. Well it took 28 minutes to reheat the water tank after a full load. So know I know it roughly cost me around 27cts to heat the water for a full load. I think soon I will be checking into a timer, it should save a little.

Classic Dave’s Windshield Delima

Tuesday, January 20th, 2009

Time to blog! Setting out to be the hottest blog on the net from the coolest guy in the A/C business! Just kidding.
I’m just one of the cool guys around, I think?

Well it’s a Freeze time! Yes even here in the South, Jacksonville Fl where I live is going below freezing! Global Warming not tonight or tomorrow!
Looks like it may even be a Hard Freeze. This is a term to describe temperatures that drop below 32°F and remain there for several hours.  A hard freeze can do damage to plant life, and/or cause freezing of water in water lines and one thing I can’t stand is putting that nasty ice on your car/truck windshield!
Well we all know that you should cover or bring in plant life to keep the vegetation warm enough to service the
cold. That’s why my wife’s lemon trees are decorating our family room tonight.  For water pipes it is good if you
have exposed water lines to have the water drip from an outside faucet. What this does is relieve the expansion of
freezing water that could form in your waterlines causing your waterlines to crack or burst. This is the most costly
damage that can occur from a hard freeze so take precautions if you feel it is necessary.
The biggest small nuisance however is the Car Window! It’s cold and of course when it is cold you are late for work!
You have ice on your window but you got to go! So what to do?
Turn on the car and start your defrost! It is always good to let your car warm up for at least a minute before you
drive it anyways. This not only helps your engine, it will get things moving on your windshield too. Still not fast
enough? Time to break out the scrapper! Remember never hit the ice in a downward force because you may hit it too
hard causing damage to your window! When scrapping Start at the bottom middle of the windshield because that is
where the defrost air is warming the window surface the most.
Still need to go faster?  Water time?!
The Big question ~ Hot Water or Cold Water?  Does hot water freeze faster than cold?  Well there is something called
the Mpemba effect and it is the observation that, in certain specific circumstances, warmer water will freezes
faster than colder water. But will hot water help you with your windshield?
My observations and recommendation is to go with the cold water. First never use boiling water. carrying a pot of
boiling water is dangerous! If there is ice on your window there could be ice that you slip on in the drive way!
Plus because of shock effect you could do damage to your  windshield by pooring boiling water on a cold window. So
no boiling ok!

Hot tap water?  Well how long does it take to wait on the hot water? A minute or two? That’s too long you have to
go! So is it cold water then? Yes! Here is a couple reasons, one you don’t have to wait for the water to get warm
and even the cold water will melt the ice on your windshield. Second you want to get your cold water flowing in your
home’s water pipes. Just like the drip effect this filling the pot with water helps keep the water from freezing
plus  it helps with the expansion effect that causes the pipes to burst. If you must do water, watch your shoes! No
wet shoes because that would be bad and it always seems when you deal with water the shoes get wet! So my overall
suggestion would be take your time let the defrost work and use the scrapper if need be.